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What Is Chrome Plating Or Polishing?

This page is dedicated to providing you with some basic facts about metals and plating. We hope you find this information of value as you seek chrome/polishing services.
Some metals are chrome plated while others simply require professional polishing. While polishing seems like a simple do-it-yourself activity, it does require time, patience, special equipment, and a need for safety. Chrome plating of course is not a do-it-yourself activity. It requires using various chemicals and facilities are licensed by various local, state and federal regulations.
Chrome plating, often referred to simply as chrome, is a technique of electroplating a thin layer of chromium onto a metal object. The chromed layer can be decorative, provide corrosion resistance, ease cleaning procedures, or increase surface hardness.(credit to


A component to be chrome plated will generally go through these different stages:
  • degreasing to remove heavy soiling;
  • manual cleaning to remove all residual traces of dirt and surface impurities;
  • various pretreatments depending on the substrate;
  • placement into the chrome plating vat, where it is allowed to warm to solution temperature; and
  • application of plating current, under which the component is left for the required time to attain thickness. (credit to

Pot metal

This is a slang term that refers to alloys that consist of inexpensive, low-melting point metals used to make fast, inexpensive castings. ...(credit to This term is defined as it is often used in the auto restoration hobby/business.

Stainless Steel has a very nice article on Stainless trim repair and restoration/polishing. To get an idea of the processes involved in restoring stainless steel products, simply click here:


Aluminum, like stainless steel, can be restored by straightening and polishing. If you have never worked with aluminum trim, as you will discover if you attempt to do so, this is a very sensitive material and one must be very careful when attempting to restore aluminum. Is it a do-it-yourself activity? Maybe. It is a very sensitive and soft material. It's best if you attempt your skill on a piece that you will not be using on your restored automobile. Don't want to try? Bring it in to the professionals. They will analyze your pieces and offer free repair estimates.
These are just a few brief descriptions of what it takes to work with metals. There is much more that can be said. But I hope that you now have a better understanding of metal restoration. And while I mention only a few metals, keep in mind that many other metals not mentioned here that can be chrome plated and/or polished. So, if you have a question, give me a call.